sublimation, change of a solid substance directly to a vapor without first passing through the liquid state. The term is also used to describe the reverse process of the gas changing directly to the solid again upon cooling. An example of sublimation is seen when iodine, on being heated, changes from a dark solid to a purplish vapor that condenses directly to a crystalline solid upon striking a cool surface. In this way pure crystals of iodine are prepared. Some other substances, e.g., mercuric chloride, can be prepared by sublimation. Solid carbon dioxide, commonly known as dry ice, sublimes at -78.5°C; (-109.3°F;). Sublimation also occurs when air saturated with water vapor is suddenly cooled below the freezing point of water. Frost and snowflakes are thus formed by water changing directly from the gaseous to the solid state.
sublimation, in psychology: see defense mechanism; psychoanalysis.

In physics, the change of state of a substance from a solid to a gas without first becoming liquid. One example is the vaporization of frozen carbon dioxide, or dry ice, at ordinary atmospheric pressure and temperature. The phenomenon occurs at pressures and temperatures (both relatively low) where solid and vapour phases coexist in equilibrium. Preservation of food by freeze-drying involves sublimation of water from the food in a frozen state under vacuum.

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